Guys, SMS marketing is a unicorn marketing channel if I ever saw one.
- At least 5 billion people worldwide can send and receive text messages.
- 95% of texts are read within 3 minutes of being sent.
- SMS averages +90% open rates and +30% response rates.
- In the U.S., text messaging is hands-down the favorite way of 20- to 40-year-olds to stay in touch with businesses.
Businesses should only consider SMS marketing if their audience mostly communicates using their smartphones. You know, basically everyone.
Of course, you don’t have to employ an army to sit on mobile phones all day, text messaging your customer and leads.
Instead, use SMS marketing tools to automatically grow a contact database, follow up with contacts in SMS, set exact delivery time, and send text messages triggered by behaviors or intent.
These are what we call SMS marketing hacks.
Here are the top 10 SMS marketing hacks that every business should use to increase customer engagement, loyalty and sales:
- SMS Keyword Opt-In
- Upload a Customer Audience List
- Get Opt-in from Web Chat
- Get Opt-in from Facebook Chat
- Post a Sign in a Store or Office
- Incentivize a Website Pop-up
- Mass Text Contacts with an SMS Blaster
- Schedule SMS Blasts in Advance
- Do Drip SMS Campaigns
- Trigger Live Agent Notifications
Ready to dive in?
1. SMS Keyword Opt-In
You’ve seen it before: Text “winner” to this phone number to enter to win. Or, Text “club” to this phone number to join our VIP club for text updates.
SMS keyword opt-in gives you a tool to sign people up to SMS marketing updates with a simple, interactive keyword.
Setting up an SMS keyword opt-in is easy in MobileMonkey. Just go to the SMS Keywords tool to create an autoresponder to any keyword you like.
Here I’ve created an SMS opt-in keyword for the keyword “CLUB”. Then I wrote the SMS that will reply.
Want to see it in action? Sign up for my SMS marketing club.
Text CLUB to 1-309-740-3151 to join me and learn all my latest hacks first.
Tips for advertising or promoting any SMS marketing program:
- Provide a link to the Terms and Conditions
- Set expectations about how often the audience gets SMS updates
- And offer an incentive or make the value of joining really clear
Sign people up for SMS text marketing updates with SMS keyword opt-in.
2. Upload a Customer Audience List
Upload a list of contact info and phone numbers for people who are interested in SMS updates.
Your existing contact database may be a key to your SMS marketing list growth. MobileMonkey lets you upload your contact list with phone numbers to your contacts.
In order to send people SMS marketing updates, people will need to agree to being messaged. Assuming you have permission, here’s how to upload a contact list in 3 steps.
Step 1: Go to MobileMonkey Leads > Contacts and click “Import phone numbers.”
Step 2: Choose a CSV file to import.
Step 3: Match the fields from the CSV to the contact attributes in your MobileMonkey lead database.
The phone number attribute is a required field.
Match each column of data from the CSV to a MobileMonkey contact attribute using a drop-down selector that lists all MobileMonkey attributes.
That’s it! Now your existing contact list is available for you to text message blast using MobileMonkey’s SMS blaster.
3. Get Opt-in from Web Chat
Website visitors can be invited to sign up for SMS marketing updates. Get SMS opt-ins from leads and customers chatting on your website chatbot
When a customer is chatting with the chatbot on your website using native web chat, invite them to provide their phone number to get updates or in case they’re disconnected.
One of the easiest ways to grow your SMS list is by adding an opt-in option to an existing chatbot dialogue.
Add the SMS opt-in widget to a chatbot from the StartBot chatbot builder.
Your website chatbot is a tool for adding SMS subscribers who are already engaged with your brand.
Test the website chat widget SMS opt-in for yourself by sending a message in the chat window on this page!
4. Get Opt-in from Facebook Chat
Same way you can invite someone chatting on your website to opt in to SMS updates, you can invite leads and customers chatting on your Facebook page.
When a customer is chatting with the chatbot on your Facebook page, now you can give them the option to stay in touch and receive updates from you via SMS.
Use the MobileMonkey SMS opt-in widget from your Facebook Page welcomer to give customers the ability to use the messaging app that’s most convenient for them.
See this in action by clicking the “Send Message” button on the MobileMonkey Facebook Page. We’ll ask you if you want to sign up for the MobileMonkey Text Marketing Club.
5. Post a Sign in a Store or Office
Inviting customers in your store or visitors to your office to opt-in to SMS updates.
Customers who shop in your store can also be encouraged to sign up for SMS updates.
By offering a prize, coupon or discount in-store, you’ll encourage them to sign up on the spot for SMS updates.
It’s basically an invite to subscribe for future text marketing campaigns and SMS blasts with a gift.
6. Incentivize a Website Pop-up
Use a website pop-up to sign people up to text marketing updates.\
Despite their controversial reputation, pop-ups are a great method for generating action. We usually set them up to invite people to sign up for email updates. But email is a crowded place, with donkey engagement rates.
Instead, use a web pop-up to invite SMS opt-in.
When they are properly timed with a strong incentive, pop-ups inviting customers to sign up for SMS marketing updates can be very useful to both retailers and customers.
7. Mass Text Contacts with an SMS Blaster
Send mass SMS text message blasts with the SMS Blaster.
Using SMS chat blasts reaches audiences with whatever business information or promotional material you have to offer; and it’s easier than ever using MobileMonkey’s SMS opt-in and text message blasting tools.
By the way, you can send chat blasts via SMS and other messaging channels like Facebook Messenger at the same time using MobileMonkey OmniChat multi-channel marketing tools.
Learn how to send a text message blast with MobileMonkey.
8. Schedule SMS Blasts in Advance
You aren’t tied to your office chair to send SMS blasts at just the right moment. SMS marketing tools let you schedule text message blasts in advance.
Scheduled SMS blasts are an excellent way to reach the masses, and ensure optimal open and engagement rates.
Scheduled SMS blasts are like scheduled email blasts with one key difference. Marketers can send campaigns at a scheduled time in the future.
Just pick a time for the blast and MobileMonkey launches the campaign to your audience based on the sender’s time zone.
People almost always have their phone within reach, and over 98% of text messages are read within just a few minutes. Compared to email or phone calls, text message blasts capture far more attention and generate more response than any other type of mass communication.
SMS blasts are also cost effective. At just pennies per message, reaching people through text is a very affordable outreach channel. What’s also nice is that when people reply to your text blasts, the messages are private and can flow into the MobileMonkey OmniChat inbox for 2-way texting.
9. Do Drip SMS Campaigns
Send nurturing drip campaigns via SMS text message.
Drip campaigns are a key to keeping active customers engaged as you continue to send them valuable, relevant content.
You can use your growing database to send SMS drip campaigns to:
- Welcome and onboard customers
- Keep leads engaged with the brand
- Activate use of sophisticated solutions
- Leverage automation to communicate at scale
MobileMonkey’s SMS drip campaign builder is all visual and just a matter of choosing an audience, putting some content together, and setting the timing of the drips.
Hello, unicorn engagement gains.
10. Trigger Live Agent Notifications
Set up alerts for your team to jump in when customers need to talk to a real human.
As you send out SMS blasts and SMS drip campaigns, your customers may continue the conversation.
Your team may need to be able to see conversations that require follow up and jump into convos. They can do this from a multi-channel customer support inbox.
View the OmniChat inbox from MobileMonkey’s web app or mobile app. Business woners and teams get a single unified inbox for viewing and responding to all conversations happening across messaging apps — from SMS to Messenger.
Seamlessly manage all messaging convos, and a live agent can jump into conversations any time.
You can also set up pop-up notification alerts to let your team know there’s a customer requesting answers or service.
Ready to get started with SMS marketing tools?
You can execute SMS marketing hacks with a MobileMonkey PRO Plan + $9/mo for a phone number add-on.
Important Next Steps
- Create a free MobileMonkey OmniChat™ chatbot. Get MobileMonkey for free today.
- Talk and learn about chatbots with other enthusiasts. Join MobileMonkey Island, a Facebook group of over 35k marketers and entrepreneurs that are ready to support you.
- Advance your marketing performance with Chatbot University, a free chatbot tutorial and training area for chat marketers.